Audubon’s Night of the Owls
Again in 2019, Indiana Audubon and it’s Indiana Project Owlnet partners will host a special night with the owls around the state to learn about and possibly see up close the amazing Northern Saw-whet Owl. On this night, participants may choose from one of FIVE owl banding stations running in Indiana to learn about the amazing migration of our smallest owl, as well as watch in the banding process of these spectacular birds. Participants may choose from the Mary Gray Bird Sanctuary station, Indiana Dunes station, the Purdue Martell Forest station, the Ball State station, or the Yellowwood State Forest station. All participants should dress for the weather, as you may be outside at certain times, depending on the station. Each station’s banding experience is different, as well as the specific access and times that the station will meet. Registered participants will report to the station at the stated time and must pre-register ahead of time, as space is limited for this unique experience.
Indiana has several owl banding stations running in the the state to research the Northern Saw-whet Owl. In October – November, the stations follow the Project Owlnet protocol and offer events throughout the season for participants to learn about the research. Northern Saw-whet Owls are common and widespread, but their secretive lifestyle makes population trends difficult to identify with standardized surveys such as the North American Breeding Bird Survey or the Christmas Bird Count. Several states have them listed them as a species of special concern.
Registration for the Night of the Owls is required, but free for both IAS members and non-members. For specific questions regarding this year’s Night of the Owls, message IAS. This event is not the the Behind the Scenes banding program offered in the Indiana Dunes.
2019 Banding Night Options:
Indiana Dunes Station– Pre-registered participants will meet at the Indiana Dunes Visitor Center at 1215 S.R. 49, Chesterton, at 6pm (CST). The presentation will begin at 6pm, with any owls captured to be banded immediately after.
Mary Gray Bird Sanctuary Station– Pre-registered participants will meet at the Mary Gray Bird Sanctuary at 3499 S Bird Sanctuary Rd, Connersville at 7pm (EST). The presentation will begin at 7pm inside Brooks Hall, with any owls captured to be banded immediately after.
Yellowwood State Forest Station– Pre-registered participants will meet inside the Yellowwood State Forest and be guided into the banding area via forest roads at 7pm (EST). Access is extremely limited and participants will receive a full set of instructions via email prior to the night. Participants should be prepared for the weather and bring drinks and snacks as all activity occurs outside.
Purdue Martell Forest Station– Pre-registered participants will meet at the Wright Center, located in Martell Forest, just east of Purdue University in West Lafayette (1007 N 725 W, West Lafayette, IN 47906). Registration is limited to twenty individuals. The presentation will begin inside the Wright Center at 7pm, with any owls captured to be banded immediately after.
Ball State Station– Pre-registered participants will meet in Muncie at 5:30pm and carpool to the banding site. More details to come.